To celebrate the first ten seasons of Titans football in the mid south, Titan Radio asked fans during the 2006 season to vote for the best players at every position. Titans Radio's All-Decade Team celebrates ten seasons of the NFL beginning with the Tennessee Oilers arrival in Memphis in 1997 through Vince Young's amazing December in 2006.
Fans voiced their opinions each week on a different position group, based on a group of candidates selected by the Titans Radio team.
Titans Radio's All-Decade Team: Offense
1995-2005 First Round Pick (1995) Alcorn State
Quarterback Steve McNair stood as the face of the Titans franchise for much of its first decade in the mid south. McNair led the Titans to four playoff appearances including an AFC Championship along with their 1st Super Bowl appearance in 99. The Associated Press named him co-MVP in 2003 and he received three Pro Bowl invitations (2000, 2003, 2005), starting for the AFC in 2003.
All-Decade Stats: 27,141 Passing Yards, 156 Passing TD's, 103 INT's, 59.5 comp.%, 83.3 QB Rating, 3,439 Rushing Yards, 36 Rushing TD's
1996-2003 First Round Pick (1996) Ohio State
Eddie George was your prototypical workhorse back. The Heisman Trophy winner out of Ohio State won the the year award in 1996 and made the Pro Bowl 4 times in his career. George also led the Titans to Super Bowl 34 by gaining 391 total yards in the Titans’ 3 playoff games. In the Super Bowl, George rushed for 95 yards and 2 touchdowns. His career totals include over 10,000 rushing yards, more than 2,000 receiving yards, and 78 touchdowns.
All-Decade Stats: 2,733 rush attempts, 10,009 rush yds, 64 TDs
1999-2000 Signed by the Titans as a Free Agent (1999) Fresno State
Lorenzo Neal only spent two seasons with the Titans, but he quickly established himself as a thunderous blocker. Neal often led the way for Eddie George, opening holes for two one-thousand yard campaigns for #27. Neal also stood as an efficient receiver, catching four touchdowns in his two years with the Titans. During his long NFL career, Neal has become a throwback to the prototypical fullback of the past, spending time with six different teams.
All-Decade Stats: 3 rushes, 1 rush TD, 16 rec., 58 rec. yds, 4 rec. TDs
1995-2003 Sixth Round Pick (1995) Maryland
For five straight seasons Frank Wycheck served as Tennessee's number one target. He helped the Titans reach the Super Bowl by recording 69 receptions for over 600 yards in 1999. Wycheck ranks third on the franchise all-time list in receptions and led the Titans in receiving for three consecutive seasons. He totaled more than 4,900 yards and 27 touchdowns during his eight seasons. Wycheck will also forever be remembered for his role in the “Music City Miracle."
All-Decade Stats: 482 catches, 4,958 yards, 27 TDs
2001-2006 Undrafted Free Agent (2001) UCLA
The Titans signed Drew Bennett as an undrafted rookie free agent after the 2001 draft. Impressive in training camp, Bennett quickly emerged as one of Steve McNair's top targets at wide out. His best season came in 2004 when Bennett caught 80 passes for 1,247 yards and 11 touchdowns. During that 2004 season, Bennett tied an NFL record when he caught eight touchdowns within a three game span, including one of the biggest nights ever recorded on Monday Night Football.
All-Decade Stats: 273 rec., 4,033 rec. yds, 25 TDs
1993-2005 First Round Draft Pick (1993) Illinois
The Titans two time pro-bowler helped anchor a line that protected a young Steve McNair. Hopkins work showed in 2000 when the Titans allowed the third fewest sacks. His great run blocking also help pave the way for Eddie George's 1,500 rushing yards and help the team win the AFC central division title. Hopkins started every game of the regualr season five times over his 13 year career, and helped Tennessee win an AFC title on their way to the Super Bowl.
All-Decade Stats: 194 games played, 188 starts. Ranks third in team history in games played and second in starts by an offensive lineman.
1983-2001 First Round Pick (1983) USC
The epitome of durability, Bruce Matthews holds the league record for most games (296) and seasons (19) played by an offensive lineman. Matthews, who played at every position on the offensive line during his career, stands as one of just two NFL players to start every game in the decade of the 90’s. Matthews helped block for nine 1000-yard rushers. In Jaunuary, 2006, voters selected Matthews to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in his first year of eligibility, the first so honored.
All-Decade Stats:14 Pro Bowls (NFL record), started 292 of 296 games
Titans Radio's All-Decade Team: Defense
1999-2003, 2008-Present First Round Pick (2003) Florida
Jevon Kearse burst onto the scene for the Titans in 1999. His speed off the edge and tenacious pass rush earned him the nickname, “The Freak.” Kearse helped the Titans get to their first ever Super Bowl, turning in 14.5 sacks and 57 tackles his first season. The rookie from the Florida Gators also earned the Defensive Rookie of the Year Award. Kearse has recorded over 250 tackles and over 60 sacks in his NFL career.
All-Decade Stats: 192 tot. tackles, 49 sacks, 19 forced fumbles, 1 INT
2002-2008 First Round Pick (2002) Tennessee
This former Tennessee Volunteer has been a staple of the Titans defense since entering the leauge as a first round draft choice in 2002. Haynesworth has started 63 games for the Titans, anchoring the defensive line as a huge run stopper. Haynesworth had a career year in 2005 starting 14 games and recording 85 tackles, 3 sacks, 11 quarterback pressures, and 9 tackles for a loss. Haynesworth was selected for his first Pro Bowl in 2007.
All-Decade Stats: 221 Tackles, 15.5 Sacks, Four Forced Fumbles
2000-current First Round Pick (2000) Syracuse
In seven seasons, the linebacker out of Syracuse has played all but one game totaling over 750 tackles, 17.5 sacks, 11 interceptions, 13 forced fumbles and scored four defensive touchdowns. Over the years, Bulluck has emerged as a tackling machine and the unquestioned Titans leader on defense. The model of consistency, Bulluck is the only player in franchise history to lead the team in tackles for four straight years.
All-Decade Stats: 868 tot. tackles, 17.5 sacks, 14 forced fumbles, 15 INTs
2000-2006 Fourth Round Pick (2000) Oregon
Peter Sirmon's teammates often called him a coach on the field. Sirmon had his best statistical year in 2003, posting 141 tackles, four tackles for a loss, and one forced fumble. In his breakout season, he became the sixth franchise player since 1986 to reach the 130-tackle plateau, joining Al Smith, Joe Bowden, Eddie Robinson, Randall Godfrey and Keith Bulluck. He retired following the 2006 season after playing in 65 games for the Titans.
All-Decade Stats: 349 total tackles, 5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 4 INTs
1998-2004 Fourth Round Pick (1998) Florida State
Samari Rolle recorded 257 total tackles, 8.5 sacks and 23 interceptions over the course of his Titans career. In terms of records, Rolle is tenth in total interceptions for a season and tenth in career interceptions with the Titans organization. He was selected to the 2000 Pro Bowl after recording seven interceptions that season, one of which he returned for a touchdown. Rolle also shares the franchise record with three interceptions in one game in 1999 against the Jacksonville Jaguars.
All-Decade Stats: 301 total tackles, 8.5 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 23 INTs
1992-2001 Eighth Round Pick (1992) Ball State
If you're looking for a tough, hard hitting safety, look no further than Blaine Bishop. The Titans drafted Bishop in the 8th round, 214th overall, out of Ball State University. Despite his draft position, Bishop had an excellent career with the Titans. This 3-time pro-bowler made opposing wide receivers think twice before going over the middle. Nicknamed “Fire,” Bishop posted a career year in 1998 with 116 tackles, 3 sacks, and 1 interception.
All-Decade Stats: 789 total tackles, 14 sacks, 15 forced fumbles, 5 INTs
1991-2000 Fourth Round Pick (1991) Iowa State
Marcus Robertson was the ''Ice'' to Blain Bishop's ''Fire.'' Robertson played 10 seasons with the Titans and was named First Team All-Pro in 1993 and 1997. In the first year in the mid south, Robertson tallied five interceptions and scored two defensive touchdowns. Over his career, Robertson played in 130 games as a Titan. He also played in the post-season in five of his ten seasons with the franchise. After retiring, he joined the Titans front office and later became the team's secondary coach.
All-Decade Stats: 699 total tackles, 1.5 sacks, 22 INTs
1999-2002 Fourth Round Pick (1999) Southern Methodist
Donald Mitchell became the complete nickel corner in the Titans' defensive system. He helped the Titans during his rookie season returning an interception for a touchdown and intercepting a Mark Brunell pass in the fourth quarter of the AFC Championship game. Mitchell bounced back from an ACL injury by recording 32 special teams tackles in 2001. Mitchell also returned a blocked punt and a blocked field goal for scores as a Titan.
All-Decade Stats: 43 special total tackles, 1 blk punt for TD, 1 blk FG for TD, 1 INT for TD
Titans Radio's All-Decade Team: Special Teams
1997-2000 Third Round Pick (1996) Penn State
From 1997 to 2000, the Titans enjoyed the special teams prowess of Terry Killens, the former Penn State Nittany Lion. Killens totaled more than 70 special teams tackles, recording a career high in 1999 with 25 tackles. He also recorded two passes defended and a fumble recovery during his time as a backup linebacker. Killens provided key blocking as the return game grew with Derrick Mason. Over his career, Killens played in more than 90 games.
All-Decade Stats:35 total tackles, 2 forced fumbles
1997-2004 Fourth Round Pick (1997) Michigan State
As a return man, Derrick Mason returned more than 150 kickoffs for nearly 3500 yards. Mason stamped himself as one of the best returners in Titans history with a 101 yard kickoff return for a touchdown, the third longest in team history. He returned 182 punts for the Titans, a franchise record, with 1590 total yards. Mason finished with 14 returns of 20-plus yards, two returned for touchdowns including a long of 69 yards and a touchdown in a 2000 win against Washington.
All-Decade Stats: 156 kick returns, 3,496 yds, 1 TD; 182 punt returns, 8.7 avg
1998-current Acquired by Titans as a Free Agent (1998) Notre Dame
Craig Hentrich is the team's all-time leading punter. Over his ten years with the team, Hentrich has shown his versatility by doing more than most punters. Hentrich has had experience with kickoffs, holding kicks, and kicking long range field goals. His net punting average of 36.8 yards is third to only behind Matt Turk and Brian Moorman. His famous "pooch punt" has helped the Titans with field position, mishandled by many returners.
All-Decade Stats: 762 punts, 32,631 yards, 28,382 net yds, long of 78 yds
Al Del Greco
1997-2000 Acquired by Titans as a Free Agent (1991) Auburn
"Automatic Al" Del Greco became one of the franchise's best kickers. From Houston to Nashville, Del Greco finished his 17 year career nailing 77% of his field goals, and 99% of his extra points. He ranks number 11 on the NFL all time leading scorer list. Del Greco nailed 473 points as a Titan, while making 111 of 132 field goals.
All-Decade Stats: 322/324 XPM, 246/295 FGM, LNG 56